McGill rose in the Times Higher Education World Rankings for 2011. McGill jumped from 35th last year to 28th in the current rankings.
Two Canadian schools were ranked higher than McGill in the Times rankings: the University of British Columbia, which moved from 30th last year to 22nd this year, and the University of Toronto, which fell from 17th in the world to 19th.
Canada had the fifth highest number of universities in the top 200 schools of any country.
According to the Times ranking’s website, there are five overarching categories that determine how a school ranks. These are teaching, worth 30 per cent of the overall ranking; research and citations, both worth 30 per cent; industry income, worth 2.5 per cent; and the international outlook of staff and students, which is worth 7.5 per cent.
“These strong results show that McGill continues to be regarded as one of the best universities in the world,” principal and vice-chancellor Heather Munroe-Blum said in a statement released by McGill. “We are gratified to be thought of so highly and we continue to strive for the excellence in our academic and research missions that will maintain these high standings.”
Monroe-Blum also stressed that rankings are important because they help to determine where prospective students and faculty ultimately decide to go.
One explanation for McGill’s large jump in the rankings was the increased emphasis on international student and faculty composition this year, which favors McGill’s diverse student and faculty body.
Earlier in the year, McGill was ranked 17th in the world by the Quacquarelli Symonds (QS) ranking system.
“We are better able to prepare our students to live and work in an increasingly globalized society, where research and interaction will increasingly take place across borders, where different cultures and backgrounds will come together to exchange ideas and experiences in shaping tomorrow’s world,” Monroe-Blum said.